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Miami Criminal Defense Blog

Illinois doctor convicted in massive insurance fraud case

A doctor in Illinois was recently convicted of health care fraud, identity theft and lying about the delivery of medical treatment in a case involving $3.5 million worth of fake operations.

The 65-year-old doctor was a pain management specialist and the owner of a Chicago medical center. From 2005-2009, he also scammed insurance companies out of at least $783,000 -- his negotiated fees for numerous surgeries that he never actually performed. Prosecutors were able to prove that he not only ordered his staff to send insurers the bills for the fake surgeries but also falsified patient information on at least two occasions. When he found out that investigators were looking at him, he instructed his billing director to "purge" the files on various patients and lie.

The consequences of a drug conviction can last your entire life

Have you ever heard of something called the Butterfly Effect? The idea is that small actions can have large and unpredictable consequences over a long period of a time. The concept is often illustrated by saying that the flap of a butterfly's wings at the right moment can ultimately lead to a hurricane in some far-off land in the future.

A drug conviction for possession when you're young and in college is similar to the flap of that butterfly's wings. If it's your first charge, the prosecutor may very well offer you a plea bargain that allows you to escape jail and move on with your life.

Former nurse facing federal drug charges narrowly avoids prison

A woman in Utah whose legal case attracted national attention because of its relationship to America's drug crisis barely avoided jail after recently violating the terms of her bail.

The former nurse is accused of stealing powerful painkillers away from patients under her care in order to feed her own addiction. At times, she even used the same needles she used on herself on patients. In the process, she infected at least seven patients in the hospital with an uncommon variety of hepatitis C that she carries. Officials believe she also exposed more than 7,000 patients to the disease between 2012 and 2014.

Most Floridians convicted of a felony win the right to vote

More than 1 million Floridians will now be able to vote thanks to approval of Amendment 4. The amendment restores voting rights to people convicted of felonies, who have finished their sentences. Only those convicted of murder or felony sex offenses will remain ineligible in Florida.

Who can get into trouble for insider trading?

Insider trading is illegal, and it can land you in federal prison. So why would anybody risk it?

Maybe some people don't believe they'll get caught if they're careful. Others, however, don't realize that what they're doing is illegal -- especially if they're not an industry insider.

Know how to handle a white collar criminal investigation

There's no real way to predict whether you'll ever be involved in a white collar criminal investigation. Even if you don't do anything wrong, you could still end up in an investigator's sights if you're connected on a personal or professional level to someone who did do something wrong.

That's why everyone should know how to handle themselves if they're ever interviewed by law enforcement authorities. Here are the main things you need to remember:

Immunity when you're a witness for the prosecution

What does it mean when a prosecutor offers you immunity in exchange for your testimony about a crime or a potential crime?

It depends. Generally speaking, the prosecutor may offer you transactional immunity or use immunity. The difference between them is significant.

What are the signs that your spouse is a drug addict?

Could your spouse be suffering from a drug addiction without your knowledge?

Responsible adults with families are just as likely to become victims of drug addiction as anyone else. A back injury at work or an extended arthritis flair-up that requires painkillers can start an otherwise stable individual down the dark road of addiction fairly fast.

Government issues warnings about fake threats

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) wants people to know that fake threats and hoaxes targeting public buildings and private citizens can lead to very real prison sentences.

Using the hashtag #ThinkBeforeYouPost as a way to spread the word, the FBI has started a campaign to educate people about the consequences of hoax threats. Such threats about bombs, hostage situations and other violent acts cost thousands in taxpayer dollars and divert law enforcement resources away from other matters. In addition, they sometimes cause emotional harm to victims and put law enforcement officers in danger.

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